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Trans-Russian, Mongolian and Manchurian

Lennins Head

If you are travelling overland by train, or other transport means, you will almost certainly require a visa for several of the countries that you may pass through or visit.

Arranging a visa can be a complex, time consuming and expensive process. Real Russia, however, can help make arranging any visas that you may require a stress free experience.

We prepare, lodge, collect and manage each application you make, before returning them to you. If you are applying for more than one visa we will do this back-to-back, checking that each visa is correct at every stage of the process.

Real Russia has experience of managing visas for thousands of people who have successfully travelled independently, and as part of one of our Trans-Siberian tour packages.

Which visas will I need and how much will it cost?

The cost will depend on which visas you need, how quickly you require them, your nationality and how many people you are securing visas for (we offer discounts for groups of four travellers or more).

The prices, and timescales, quoted here are for UK nationals using standard processing and include all costs necessary to obtain your visa; these include consular fees and invitations, though are exclusive of delivery fees. Please contact our visa experts for information and pricing if you are not a UK national, or if you have any further questions or requirements.

Please click on a route for more information about the visas required.

The Trans-Manchurian railway runs from Moscow in European Russian, through the Ural mountains, across the Siberian plain, around lake Baikal and separates from the Trans-Russian route at Chita before travelling to Beijing. The total journey is nearly 9000km.

To take this journey you will need Russian and Chinese visas.

Prices start from £215.40 per person for an all-inclusive service. You will be eligible for a £10 discount on this price if you book three nights or more accommodation with us or book a train ticket within Russia.

If you are planning on entering Russia from Europe via Belarus then you will also need a Belarusian visa; adding a minimum of £77.00 to the price above.

The Trans-Mongolian railway runs from Moscow in European Russia following the Trans-Russian route through to Ulan-Ude deep in Siberia,before branching off and continuing via Ulan-Bator in Mongolia to Beijing. The total journey is over 7600km.

To take this journey you will need Russian and Chinese visas. Previously you will have also needed a Mongolian visa but, thanks to the trial of a ‘Visa Free Regime’ for UK nationals, this is no longer the case; making a journey on the Trans-Mongolian route much better value, knocking around £94 off of the price.

Prices start from £215.40 per person for an all-inclusive service. You will be eligible for a £10 discount on this price if you book three nights or more accommodation with us or book a train ticket within Russia.

If you are planning on entering Russia from Europe via Belarus then you will also need a Belarusian visa adding a minimum of £77.00 to the price above.

The Trans-Russian railway runs from Moscow in European Russia through to the Pacific port of Vladivostok in Russia’s Far East, over 9,000km away.

The Trans-Russian never leaves Russia, therefore you will only need a Russian visa for this journey.

Prices start from £122.40 per person for an all-inclusive service. You will be eligible for a £10 discount on this price if you book three nights or more accommodation with us or book a train ticket within Russia.

If you are planning on entering Russia from Europe via Belarus then you will need a Belarusian visa adding a minimum of £77.00 to the price above.

What is included in the price?

Our prices are inclusive of all costs; there are no hidden fees. The following are included in the price:

  • Fees for all necessary visa support documents and letters of invitation
  • Ministry processing charges
  • Local taxes
  • Consular tariffs
  • Delivery, collection and management of your application at each consulate by our staff
  • All checks to ensure that each visa is valid and has been correctly issued

You do not have to:

  • Book a flight, train or hotel (for Russian visas)*
  • Provide your own letter of invitation or any visa support documents
  • Go to the consulate yourself

The price you see is the price you pay!

*This may vary for some nationalities so please check the visa requirements when ordering.

How can I pay for my visas?

You have several options to pay for your visa including:

When can I apply for my visas?

We would advise that people give themselves plenty of time to apply for, and receive, their visas. This is particularly true if you are applying for multiple visas. The following timescales are advisable:

  • Trans-Mongolian visas – four to five weeks before departure
  • Trans-Manchurian visas – four to five weeks before departure
  • Trans-Russian visas – three weeks before departure

It is important to take into consideration several points:

  • Russian Tourist visas can be applied for at any point before departure though it is best to wait until no more than six months.
  • The Single Entry Chinese Tourist visas give you a 90 day window in which to enter China starting from the date the consulate issue the visa. Once you have entered the country you are able to stay for up to 30 days. If you applied today, your visa would be valid until 02 October 2014.
  • Double Entry Chinese Tourist visas are available, but they are not usually required for Trans-Siberian trips. If you would like further information please visit our Chinese visa page.

How long does it take to process the visas?

We will only submit your visa applications to the relevant consulates once we have received your completed visa application pack and checked that all your paperwork is present and in order.

Provided your visa application pack is in order, we will typically lodge your first application with the first consulate the working day after we receive it. Following this, the processing time is expressed in ‘working days’; these exclude weekends as well as UK or consular specific national or public holidays. For each visa, the standard service processing times are as follows:

To calculate how long the visa process will take, simply add the days required for each visa together, with an additional day in between each visa in order to allow us to courier applications between consulates.

Here is a worked example, excluding postage time to return your documents to you:

  • Russian Visa (8 days) + Transfer between consulates (1 day) + Chinese Visa (4 days) = 13 days

It is possible to speed this service up by choosing a faster processing time and paying additional consular fees. Details on these costs can be found on the specific visa page for each country. Alternatively you can contact our visa experts with your requirements, or questions, for further help.

How do I order?

Simply follow the links below for each visa that you need, complete the online order form and then follow the instructions that will be emailed to you.

Please note: If you require your passports and visas delivered back to you, and you are ordering more than one visa, select the delivery method in the record for your first visa only. For all other visas please select ‘Multi-application (delivery option indicated in other record)’.

Will you process all my visas together?

Yes. You can send us the applications for multiple visas together, and we will check, manage and process them back-to-back.

If you may need your passport part way through the visa process, we can process each visa individually, returning your passport to you when you require it. You can then send it back to us to complete the process. Please be aware that this will incur extra postage costs.

If I am travelling as part of a group, can we send our applications together?

Yes, this is not a problem. In this instance you can choose to have all the passports returned to a single address (to save on postage costs), or we can return the passports individually.

If you would like all of your passports returned to one address, please select the delivery address in one visa record only. For all of the other applicants select ‘Return with another passport – details in comments box’, and make a note of the visa record that contains the address in the comments box.

Can I deliver and collect my passport and visa in person?

Yes you can. We have an office in Islington, central London, which is just a few minutes’ walk from the closest tube station, Highbury and Islington. We will be happy to see you and assist with any aspect of your application. If you intend on visiting us, we are open for collection and deliveries during the following times:

Passport Collection and Delivery times
Weekdays 09.00 18.00
Saturday 09.00 12.00
Bank / public holidays By arrangement

Visa applications received by our office after 16:30 on weekdays, or at any time on Saturdays or non-working days, will not be processed until the following working day.

Related Trans-Siberian information

If you are planning a trip by train on the Trans-Siberian railway, then you may find the following links useful.

Can you tell me more?

If you have any further questions, please consult our Knowledgebase, speak to your fellow travellers in our forums, take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions regarding visas page, or contact our travel specialists who are always happy to help.